Honoring Ron Newman Who Earned 50 Wins As The First Head Coach of Kansas City
U.S. Soccer Hall of Famer Ron Newman passed away in August at the age 84 in Tampa, Florida. This is Part I – Interview with Guy Newman.
Soccer news: Ron Newman has left an indelible impact on American soccer and it is our honor to pay tribute to the man who loved soccer more than air.
There was a minute of applause in the 50th minute of Saturday’s MLS Sporting Kansas City vs Orlando City match to pay tribute to late Ron Newman and honor his 50 wins as the club’s first head coach.
San Diego based Guy Newman — Ron’s son, who served as an assistant coach during his father’s time in Kansas City — was recognized on the field at halftime and presented with a framed tribute to his father.
Guy Newman is the Director Of Coaching at Barcelona Cantera FC, a small youth soccer club which helps make the game available to those often left out of the more expensive Pay-to-Play model.
Our Interview with Ron Newman’s Son, Guy Newman:
Diane Scavuzzo: What was it like to be back in Kansas City at Sporting KC in honor of your father?
Guy Newman: It was emotional. My father and I were there in the early days and so much has changed. It is a fantastic soccer stadium.
Earlier in the day, we had gone to tour the state-of-the-art Pinnacle National Development Center. That is the new, training home for Sporting Kansas City and is their training grounds. It was mindboggling, especially when you compared it to what we had back in the day. It was night and day. It is great to see how far it has advanced.
Diane Scavuzzo: When you were at the Sporting KC vs Orlando City match, what did think of the Kansas City fans?
Guy Newman: The crowd and the atmosphere in the stadium were fantastic. The fans are really invested in the team and are real soccer fans.
The Sporting fans were there to support the game. The fans in the Cauldron never stopped for a moment.
It is very similar to soccer in Europe where the fans live and die by how their team does.
Diane Scavuzzo: What is your greatest memory of your father on the field?
Guy Newman: He was always very passionate.
He loved his players and loved the game.
He did so much for the game in a time when it was not easy. A lot of people had come in the early days and had given up on making soccer successful in America. When the game didn’t really take off, they went back, but he kept going.
He never gave up, that was his personality. He would be very pleased to see where the game is now.
Diane Scavuzzo: Did he have a preference for indoor or outdoor soccer? I know that Ron Newman is one of the very few coaches who was highly acclaimed as a coach in both forms of soccer.
Guy Newman: No, he loved both games.
When the outdoor folded in 1984, he was very upset as he had put so much time and effort into it.
At that point, indoor was all there was. He just turned around an put his efforts into indoor then. He thought soccer was soccer.
He grew up playing soccer in the streets and banging balls off the walls.
It didn’t matter to him — as long as he was kicking the ball around. It was just soccer by different rules.
Diane Scavuzzo: Turning back the clock to those days in Kansas City when you coached the MLS team with your dad, what was your favorite memory?
Guy Newman: The first game — we didn’t know what to expect.
There were 19,000 people and I think we played Colorado and won 3-0.
There were areas in the country which had a stronger soccer background like Washington DC or LA. Kansas City was in the middle of the country and we had no idea what would happen. We were thrilled. The fans came out and were very passionate.
It was clear that this was the beginning of something very special.
Related Soccer News: HONORING THE LATE RON NEWMAN – SPORTING KC’S FIRST HEAD COACH
Editorial Note: Our deepest sympathies to all those whose lives Ron Newman touched. May we always remember how much he gave to American soccer. From the moment I met Ron Newman, I knew he was a sincere, genuine and very special man.
Thank you to Sporting KC for the picture of Ron Newman above.